A Day In The A Blue Mountains.

Thanks for visiting my blog. I welcome you to take your time and browse , visiting my bush garden and discovering the wonders of my city within a national park; Blue Mountains National Park. Via my blog you will travel with me through the successes, trials and tribulations of gardening on a bush block. I share with you my patchwork & quilting, knitting, paper crafts, cooking and life in general.

Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Lunch Date

Had a lunch date with a dear quilting friend who has just put her house on the market.  I will miss her as she is moving down south, about three hours drive away.
What do you take to a lunch when you're told to bring 'nothing'?
I decided to make Nigella Lawson's Rocky Road Crunch Bars which not only taste scrumptious but travel well too!  Achieving gluten free might be a little difficult because although the  biscuits can be substituted with rice cookies I haven't found a substitute for gluten free marshmallows unless you make your own.
But I was in a big rush....half an hour to make these treats before setting off to the Bowen Therapist and letting them set in the refrigerator for two hours before returning home to pack them up into a pretty gift.
I used this graphic from The Graphics Fairy to make a thank you tag.  The cut rocky road was packed into a cellophane bag which I tied with a gold ribbon and voila!

I rubber stamped 'thank you' onto the tag because I had little time to do anything else.  I'm sure 'thank you' text could be included via  the photo editing program but in this instance a stamp was quicker.

My friend's verdict was positive!  And she served up a luscious pumpkin soup, a tasty stir fry and alongside my rocky road...shortbread almond treats.  What more could a girl want on a wet and cold afternoon?

I have linked this post to The Graphics Fairy.

Friday, 27 May 2011

Twin Cards for Twin Sisters - Card 2.

In an attempt to be very organised for my Twin Sisters' birthday I took up the sketch saturday challenge to inspire my gone by the by card making skills.
I've used Kaisercraft background papers and embellishments, Penny Black image - Brush Butterfly - and one of my favourite.  Also Ruby Rock-it up Stairs down Stairs Narrative sheets, Bradz, Kindyglitz glitter glue and whatever else I could find lying around.  And I have LOTS lying around, I can assure you!

Twin Cards for Twin Sisters - Card 1.

In an attempt to be very organised for my Twin Sisters' birthday I took up the sketch saturday challenge to inspire my gone by the by card making skills.
I've used Kaisercraft background papers and embellishments, Penny Black image - Brush Butterfly - and one of my favourite.  Also Ruby Rock-it up Stairs down Stairs Narrative sheets, Bradz, Kindyglitz glitter glue and whatever else I could find lying around.  And I have LOTS lying around, I can assure you! 

I have linked this post to sketchsaturday.blogspot.com

Thursday, 26 May 2011

Marble Choc Cookies

Yesterday afternoon, my Daughter and Grand Daughter made some yummy Marble Choc Cookies substituting gluten free flour for the plain flour.
I think they taste delishh! Some yummy comfort food for the cold weather we've been experiencing.

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Quote of the Day.

Well, two quotes:

1.  Her to Him:  the trouble with modern music today is that it's ... sooo... modern!

2.  Grand Daughter, age three (to me):  Nanna, do you wear your (reading) glasses to bed?
    Me:  No I don't.  But sometimes I read in bed and then I wear my glasses.
    Grand Daughter:  Do you read Opa a story in bed?

Monday, 23 May 2011

Brag Monday - How To Make A Clock From A Compact Disc.

You will need:


and a snack...

I found a suitable graphic here which I saved on my computer as a jpeg file then inserted it into a Word document to print out on my CD/DVD label. (Refer to your brand of labels for layout.)
Once printed, I applied the label to DVD/CD front and assembled the clock fittings.

To jazz the graphic up a bit I used one of my favourite colouring medium...

to achieve this...

Couldn't resist so I did this...

by printing out a border from The Graphics Fairy with the previous graphic.
Then another...

If you wish to add numerals to your clock you could use stickers or buy some numerals made specially for clocks, when you buy your clock workings, from a craft supplier.
I prefer to leave mine as is because I like the decorative effect achieved without them. AND we have soooo many clocks in our house, well, it doesn't matter if one or two are not so easy to read!

Thanks for stopping by AND to Karen at The Graphics Fairy!

Fingers Crossed.

This is now a complete quilt top...this morning I purchased quilt back and wadding.  Just need to cut my binding and off it goes to the long arm quilter along with this quilt top

Will they be ready for my Twin Sisters' birthdays in two weeks?

I've linked this post to WIP Wednesday, Freshly Pieced.  Wednesday 25.5.2011

Lavender Shortbread - Gluten Free.


Wanted to post photographs of the two beautiful rounds of lavender shortbread I made during the week - but alas, this is all that's left of them!
The shortbread was delicious.  I used a Karen Martini recipe again and substituted plain flour with gluten free flour.

Sunday, 22 May 2011

Calorie Free Cupcakes.

On a sunny Sunday morning, my Daughter, Grand Daughter and I sat around in our pjs and made cupcakes.  Out of felt.

Sequined cupcakes,

all sorts of cupcakes and all calorie free!
All you need to make one of these cupcakes are two circles of felt, from the two colours of your choice and of the same size.  Stitch your desired decorations to one circle (the top/icing) before stitching the two circles together using embroidery thread and leaving a small gap to stuff polyester toy filling into the cupcake.  Stitch using a running stitch about 1/4 inch from edge.  Then pull the thread tight to achieve a ruffle effect(imitating a patty pan) before sewing up the gap and tying off.

In the afternoon I planted some broad beans and this little yellow breasted robin came along and helped.

Then we sat on the front verandah and had afternoon tea, with cupcakes....

Thursday, 19 May 2011

Progress Report.

Here is a short progress report on the second Twin quilt I'm making.  I've decided on half square blocks which I've played around with and here is a sneak peak of the end result.  Since this photograph was taken I've stitched all the blocks together (with lots of unpicking) and all that remains is for a small border to be added. I love the colours so much I'm tempted to use them in a quilt for me! 
You can see my first Twin Sister's almost complete quilt here

Friday, 13 May 2011

And Another Funny Thing (Mushroom).

Found this fine specimen of Amanita muscaria (fly agaric) growing in my Sister's front garden, under a conifer tree, on Mother's Day.
My Grand Daughter (three) and my Youngest Niece (four) truly believed that they would find fairies beneath them, if they looked hard enough.
Beautiful as the fungi looked, they were warned off them!  All together we found three of the mushrooms, all in various stages of growth.

Thursday, 12 May 2011

A Funny Week.

Funny little things have been going on this week.
I've continued my Bowen Therapy which has given me stellar results and encouraged me to walk everyday.  I've been walking between two and four kilometres per day.
On Wednesday I reported a sewer manhole leak to Sydney Water which resulted in a workman coming out immediately but not fixing the problem.  The stench has been about for two weeks prior to this but didn't realise just where it was coming from.
I suspect this workman was supposed to put a report in for more work to be done but nothing eventuated and on Saturday we reported it again.  Sunday saw another workman come out (while we were all out) who 'flushed the system' but with no apparent results. He left a message on our answering machine telling us all was okay at their end and that we should now call a plumber if there were further problems.
After a third call to Sydney Water on Sunday night, they refused point blank to do any further work or inspections.  We reported the situation to the government body for the environment and they told us that they would call Council and Sydney Water the next day.
Well, the next day, the stench got worse and by six that night we had heard nothing.  Called Sydney Water once more and it took a lot of convincing to get one of their supervisors to call us back.  Finally we were able to convince him that there was a problem, it was not on our property and that if it was a manhole leaking on a footpath across the road from our property, then it was not our problem but theirs.  We were simply reporting a problem.
Happy ending, they had reported to the wrong manhole on the Sunday and on Monday night, the choke had been cleared and the area disinfected.
Yesterday, my Youngest Son cut his finger at apprenticeship school and is waiting to see if he has done any damage to his tendon.  His girlfriend is away with work at the moment so has no one to look after him and I can't believe how much I feel my children's pain.  Hoping that all will recover fully for him.
Mother's Day went beautifully, I'll post some photos of my beautiful gifts.  
The weather has been temperamental...beautiful one day, gloomy the next.  Snow at Blackheath (or as we call it Bleakheath), last night.

Saturday, 7 May 2011

Mother's Day Preparations.

In anticipation of Mother's Day I had afternoon tea at Tara Tea Room today, with three of my beautiful children and my gorgeous Grand Daughter.
What spectacular weather.  What a spectacular outlook.  Really felt like I was back in the nineteenth century, until I looked up and saw the Sydney Harbour Bridge towering over the beautiful buildings of  The Rocks!
The Rocks Weekend Markets were on - so not a motor vehicle in sight.
Our selection of scones included pumpkin, cherry ripe and date, served with a delightful variety of jams and creams.  The mood was very relaxed.
My Youngest Son presented me with the most exquisitely wrapped gift voucher to have tea at The Tea Room,  Queen Victoria Building and a copy of Elizabeth Gilbert's book Eat Pray Love.
Tomorrow we're walking into Springwood early morning for coffee at the Pink Papaya, then lunch at Older Twin Sister's house.
I've prepared Grated Beetroot Russian Style to share with the extended family.
Let me be one of the first to wish all you delightful mothers out there a happy Australian Mother's Day 2011!

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